Representatives of parliaments, regulatory authorities, top management from public service media (PSM), governing bodies and civil sector in the Western Balkans (WB) have unanimously adopted a set of common PSM funding principles.
Acknowledging the importance of PSM in the democratization processes of the WB countries and their indispensable role in the fight against disinformation, participants in a regional conference on PSM funding in Sarajevo (28 May) discussed the challenges to PSM funding and agreed on the adoption of a set of common PSM funding principles.
The principles focus on the importance of independent, stable and predictable funding of PSM, which are vital in enabling PSM to fulfil its broad public remit and its essential democratic function.
The principles promote the key role of sound and respected legislative frameworks, political will, abstention from political interference and transparent, accountable and responsible use of public money.
The EBU’s Director of Legal and Policy Richard Burnley, the former EBU Vice President Boris Bergant and the EBU’s Head of Member Relations for Central and Eastern Europe Radka Betcheva presented EBU standards and best practices, before tabling a proposal for a set of common PSM funding principles for the Western Balkans. The participants endorsed the proposal and also expressed their will to follow up on the implementation of these principles.
The regional conference was organized in the framework of a joint project with the European Commission for technical assistance of PSM in the WB, implemented by a Consortium composed by the EBU, IFJ, EFJ, ERNO, ORF and BIRN.